Potholes increase by a third to half a million in UK piling on motoring misery

The number of potholes has risen 33% in two years and is worsening, figures suggest.

Some 512,270 potholes were reported to 161 councils last year.

The figure, from data requests to the 212 authorities responsible for roads, compares with 356,432 reported to 152 councils in 2015.

Considering those unable to respond to the Freedom of Information request, the RAC believes reports rose 33% over two years.

And the motoring organisation believes Britain’s true pothole figure could be as high as 674,000.

RAC’s Nicholas Lyes said thousands go unreported yearly.

He added: “We bel­­ieve the sheer size of the increase is fur­th­­er proof the condition of our roads is worsening.”

Potholes can damage vehicle shock absorbers, suspension springs and wheels.

The AA has called for learner drivers to have to prove they can spot potholes to pass the driving test.

Martin Tett, the Local Government Association’s (LGA) transport spokesman, said councils are fixing a pothole every 21 seconds but need more funding to “embark on the widespread improvement of our roads that is desperately needed”.

He added: “The LGA has been calling on the Government to annually reinvest a portion of existing fuel duty into local road maintenance which would generate much-needed funding for councils to spend on addressing the £9.3 billion roads repair backlog.”

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